/Mississippians adopt new state flag after Confederate emblem flew for 126 years

Mississippians adopt new state flag after Confederate emblem flew for 126 years

The majority of voters approved the flag. It now features the words “In God we Trust” rather than the Confederate battle emblem, which was divisive and had been in use for 126 years. In June, the Mississippi Legislature removed the old flag that was adopted in 1894 by racist legislators. It was the last flag in the country to feature the controversial Confederate battle emblem. The state’s Jim Crow history was being resisted by community, religious, and business leaders. Over the summer, more than 3,000 public submissions were received for new flag designs. In September, the appointed commission chose the new design with magnolias and stars from a mix of multiple submissions. The decision to ratify a replacement flag was left up to the voters. They had the option to vote “yes” or not on the adoption of the new design. If Mississippians had rejected the Tuesday design, the commission would have presented a new design for voters. Many activists and legislators from Black communities worked tirelessly for decades to change the state’s flag. The change was made possible by a coalition of Black and white legislators. Philip Gunn, the Republican House Speaker, has been a strong advocate for the removal of the old flag. He was also the first prominent Republican leader to call for the change. Gunn recently stated that “While the rest the world seems to be divided over protests or political agendas,” Mississippians are setting an example by using the ‘In God We Trust” flag to point the rest the world to the solution to all our problems: in God We Trust. The flag features a magnolia, the official state tree/flower, on a blue background with stars with red vertical stripes at the ends. One prominent star is made of diamonds to represent the Native Americans who first settled the area. A ring of smaller stars marks the fact that Mississippi became the 20th state in 1817. When the Legislature voted to take down the old flag, it made it clear that any design that was put forward for voters must include the words “In God we Trust” and the Confederate emblem. Let Mississippi Vote hopes to reverse the Legislature’s decision to remove the old flag. It will mount a petition drive in order to get the initiative on the ballot as soon as 2022. This would allow voters to choose between the In God We Trust flag or the restored 1894 flag. According to the group, it planned to collect names and other information at polls Tuesday in preparation for its drive. The group stated that it would have people at the polls on Tuesday collecting names and information for its drive.